A letter to our fans regarding the launch and our commitment to Bloodlines 2

RagnarokCzD

Colonel
Apr 1, 2019
1.084
1.049
33
Do the actual developers ever post on this forum at all?
Well, yes, obviously ... but not so often.
Original post was one of those cases. ;)
Some older DD was also posted (or even discuised) with some developers themself. ;)

At the least, they could answer whether the writing team is still working on the title and if the key people are still there. Oh well.
Well, that is the problem here ...
Everyone wish to answer "just this one thing" ... also, not everyone will be satisfied with that answer, and so that one will again wish to answer "just this one thing" ... every day there can be someone new, who also wish to answer "just this one thing" ... and if someone will ask something they cant answer yet, he will demand answer for some other "just that one thing" ...
And sooner, or later, they do nothing but answering here. :-/

I dont say its certain, but its certainly option. :D
 

Bear Squared

First Lieutenant
Aug 13, 2020
221
383
Well, "Brian Mistoda is still working on it" probably takes 5 seconds and is hard to argue or spin off into a wild theory, but point taken - that is, if they even pay attention to these forums, in which case, it's more PDX's call, not Hardsuit (I'm not sure what forums Hardsuit runs/tracks, or I'd direct questions there). If they have a Discord they are more active at, it's worth trying there, I suppose.
 
  • 1
Reactions:

RagnarokCzD

Colonel
Apr 1, 2019
1.084
1.049
33
I asked on Discord, i was told its not either iformation they have, nor their business to talk about other people employment ...
Wich also seem fair.

I believe (read as: want to believe) they do pay attention to this forum, among other things ...
At last, as far as i understand it, its Outstar's job to read all (read as: most of) our nonsences here, filter it, and send it forward.
Cant say i envy her ... :D :-/
 

Feeona

First Lieutenant
Community Ambassador
72 Badges
Mar 27, 2019
219
514
  • Age of Wonders
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Cities: Skylines - Natural Disasters
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Cities: Skylines - Campus
  • Cities: Skylines - Mass Transit
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mandate of Heaven
  • Surviving Mars: First Colony Edition
  • BATTLETECH
  • Surviving Mars
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Cities: Skylines - Green Cities
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Crusader Kings III: Royal Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Surviving Mars: Digital Deluxe Edition
  • BATTLETECH - Digital Deluxe Edition
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife
  • Stellaris: Distant Stars
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • Surviving Mars: First Colony Edition
  • Stellaris: Megacorp
  • Stellaris: Nemesis
  • Stellaris: Necroids
  • Stellaris: Lithoids
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Stellaris: Ancient Relics
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Stellaris: Federations
  • Prison Architect
  • BATTLETECH: Season pass
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Golden Century
  • Empire of Sin
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Europa Universalis 4: Emperor
  • King Arthur II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
Hey y'all, we absolutely do take the time to read all your comments! With development on-going, we'd rather let the developers at HSL spend their time on the game than replying to all the questions thrown at them on a daily basis.

We are working on keeping the community as up to date as possible and I'll try to answer anything I possibly can so feel free to ping me. : )

At last, as far as i understand it, its Outstar's job to read all (read as: most of) our nonsences here, filter it, and send it forward.
Cant say i envy her ... :D :-/

Outstar has her hands full on all the rest of the WoD universe haha! I specifically do what you mentioned
 
Last edited:
  • 2
  • 2
Reactions:

Andrei the Tzimisce

Second Lieutenant
On Probation
Jun 11, 2019
123
391
Hey y'all, we absolutely do take the time to read all your comments! With development on-going, we'd rather let the developers at HSL spend their time on the game than replying to all the questions thrown at them on a daily basis.
We are working on keeping the community as up to date as possible and I'll try to anything I possibly can so feel free to ping me. : )

697yup6k118z.jpg


Sorry for this Meme but can you please answer this very simple and important question. Is Brian Mitsoda still working on Bloodlines 2 or not?
 
Last edited:
  • 4
  • 2Like
Reactions:

Bear Squared

First Lieutenant
Aug 13, 2020
221
383
Sorry for this Meme but can you please answer this a very simple and important question. Is Brian Mitsoda still working on Bloodlines 2 or not?

Yeah, this was kind of the point - this should be a simple 5 second answer, would definitely help weed this thread (or expand it if he's not working on it like the Creative Director and former PDX producer).
 
  • 2
  • 1Like
Reactions:

Andrei the Tzimisce

Second Lieutenant
On Probation
Jun 11, 2019
123
391
Yeah, this was kind of the point - this should be a simple 5 second answer, would definitely help weed this thread (or expand it if he's not working on it like the Creative Director and former PDX producer).
Serious question do you we really need an official statement? I mean the official "can´t talk about right now" response" is saying something.
If Brian Mitsoda really hasn´t left Hardsuit Labs we already have an answer "like of course he is still working on Bloodlines".
But nothing. So that means in my opinion that he left with his friend and creative director Ka´ai Cluney Hardsuit Labs.

It makes sense that Paradox won´t want talk about it at the moment. I assume they want to wait maybe next week (when the Online Gamescom 2020 takes place)
to announce this because its wise to talk about this stuff when the gamer / gaming press focus is on many other games.
 
  • 1
  • 1
Reactions:

somewherebeyond

Sergeant
3 Badges
Dec 12, 2019
56
101
  • Shadowrun Returns
  • Shadowrun: Dragonfall
  • Shadowrun: Hong Kong
ill put it very simple. If all of these guys finished their work and moved on, we would get such comment. However if there is radio silence that means things went sideways. Also if lead writer is leaving that normally means no new content, no dlc (for pdx that is very strange no). And also having a lead writer and creative director is must have for any studio or they plan to outsource? :D

You can outsource many things, but core writing, narrative, design and creative direction are definitely not assets for outsourcing.
 
Last edited:
  • 2
Reactions:

Bear Squared

First Lieutenant
Aug 13, 2020
221
383
ill put it very simple. If all of these guys finished their work and moved on, we would get such comment. However if there is radio silence that means things went sideways. Also if lead writer is leaving that normally means no new content, no dlc (for pdx that is very strange no). And also having a lead writer and creative director is must have for any studio or they plan to outsource? :D

You can outsource many things, but core writing, narrative, design and creative direction are definitely not assets for outsourcing.

That's a good point. I do know other DLCs for other products sometimes just have juniors work on them (to save costs) but not having the Lead Writer involved in the DLC (and hopefully multiple) seems important. Also, I'd think some of the writers if not Brian (who was hired full time at Hardsuit, so getting fired/leaving would be a short career there, and doesn't make much sense) would have already announced the other projects/companies they've moved on to.

Radio silence is often legally the best policy, especially if it's bad news and isn't delivered by the developers who were fired. Often, it feels like HR and PR departments want to see if the news fades away or vanishes completely so they don't even have to address it.

All that would be helpful here is knowing about the Lead Writer which feels like it could be confirmed while dodging the other points if they're uncomfortable (we don't need confirmation the Creative Director and PDX producer are gone, but if the circumstances were different and as to whether they are getting replaced, that would help).

If Discord is more responsive than the officials on this forum (I assumed the devs and PDX actually participated in these forums), I'll post the questions there if someone with the Knowing is present.
 

Marc_Hicks

Colonel
12 Badges
Apr 14, 2018
1.173
480
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • BATTLETECH
  • Surviving Mars
  • BATTLETECH: Flashpoint
  • Imperator: Rome Deluxe Edition
  • Imperator: Rome
  • BATTLETECH: Season pass
  • BATTLETECH: Heavy Metal
  • Imperator: Rome - Magna Graecia
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Crusader Kings III: Royal Edition
  • Crusader Kings II
ill put it very simple. If all of these guys finished their work and moved on, we would get such comment. However if there is radio silence that means things went sideways. Also if lead writer is leaving that normally means no new content, no dlc (for pdx that is very strange no). And also having a lead writer and creative director is must have for any studio or they plan to outsource? :D

You can outsource many things, but core writing, narrative, design and creative direction are definitely not assets for outsourcing.

Why would we get such comment? Internal development matters are exactly that-INTERNAL. Unless there has been scandalous treatment of employees involved, then I have no need to see them air their linen in public. BTW, you are aware that writing & narrative were largely entrusted to Doublebear Productions-Brian Mitsoda's studio? BTW, I have scoured hundreds of Google Search results, & not a single confirmation of these ridiculous conspiracy theories has been forthcoming. Are you guys so bored that you need to make stuff up to pass the time?
 

Johann7

Sergeant
46 Badges
Jan 9, 2010
67
59
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Stellaris
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Tyranny: Archon Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Crusader Kings II: Monks and Mystics
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Tyranny - Bastards Wound
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Stellaris: Distant Stars
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • 500k Club
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Tyranny - Tales from the Tiers
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
I agree. Instead of potentially forcing yourself into a corner to try to make a deadline and then delaying once again, it is better to just stay silent on any release window. As you said, once all the main features are on a live version, with only tweaks and other minor additions to include, then make an announcement. Seems to be the safest option for them and the community. Just my two cents.

Eh, it's really a lose-lose situation, because what people ultimately want is a great game (by whatever subjective standards any given person applies), right now. And some of them get really angry when they can't have what they want (just look at how worked up many, many people got over the inclusion-or-not of a single phrase in a dead language in another upcoming PDX release - this is just an illustrative example that should not be taken as a discussion prompt, because the topic got SO contentious that its general discussion is heavily restricted on this forum). Which is actually understandable, as games are part of culture, and culture is tied to identity and worldview, which are how we interpret and define our reality and ourselves, so challenges to our expectations literally feel like existential threats to some degree (even though they rarely are true threats).

For an example of a studio following your strategy, see Valve: mentioning Half-Life 2: Episode 3, then its reimagining as Half-Life 3, then nothing since then didn't stop the questions or speculation or screens-long rants on internet fora (or angry vlogging these days). Of course, now most people assume the project is canceled. They did release Team Fortress 2 as a complete surprise nine years after announcing it, and it was quite successful, so that approach can work in some sense, but it probably works best when your entire business has changed to being a publisher and storefront that happens to make a game every once in a while (or occasionally purchases entire studios that are already near completion of a game) rather than primarily a game developer, so your revenues (and investment capital) aren't tied to things like release quarter sales figures of your latest project.

The big problem that release dates try to solve (admittedly imperfectly) is that development is never actually finished. There are always additional features the team wants to make work, additional bugs to fix, additional optimizations that can be made. If you never have someone saying, "Enough, it's done, we're shipping this now," then development continues forever. In some cases, what you wind up with looks almost nothing like your initial software, and that can be a blessing or a huge problem (see Stellaris for example, which has radically changed almost every core mechanic from launch and progressively broken more and more systems and bogged down the engine with more and more state checks with each successive DLC/update to the point that it's practically unplayable from the mid-game on, while some game systems don't function at all, ever, or don't function properly from the start; even with that being the case, it has many fans who prefer the current state to the game that was originally released). The potential and contextual pressure for perpetual development is part of what has led to the enormously-problematic-on-the-balance software-as-a-service model (pressures of finance capitalism are the other part), where now nobody ever has a stable target for user platforms (whether it's a constantly changing OS that breaks more and more existing software with every update unless all of THOSE programs are continually updated as well, or a constantly changing game that breaks mods with each iteration) and users are constantly forced to adapt to new interfaces and (not infrequently) removed features.

PDX has tried to split the difference with their update/DLC-paywall model, and it can work well enough, though, as noted with Stellaris, that doesn't avoid all of the associated problems. There really is no one perfect solution - every development model has associated benefits and detriments. You're always facing constraints like those modeled by the project management triangle, and every decision has opportunity costs.

My personal adaptation to the new market norms has been to decide to never pre-order a game under any circumstances (not even EXCLUSIVE!!! content I think I might like - none of it ever stays exclusive, there's always eventually a complete edition or add-on pack, and I'm at the point where I'm not only not pre-ordering games, I'm waiting like five or six years after release until no more DLC is being produced and I can get a complete edition on sale; competitive multiplayer has some different considerations) and to never use software with a subscription payment model (including DLC "passes"). I still get to play most games I want to play eventually, and with the sheer number of games (even good games, in any particular genre) now available thanks to digital delivery all but eliminating publication barriers (and crowdfunding bypassing major publisher gatekeeping, though that only remains true as long as enough people DON'T adopt my never-pre-order approach), I'm never lacking something new to try out even with those constraints.

At any rate, I'll check out BL2 whenever it is eventually released and buy it if it looks like something I'll enjoy. I was an enormous fan of the first game (even the sewers on replay, which are not nearly as tedious as I remembered; I think my initial problem was that I was trying to be too conservative with resources in my first few playthroughs instead of charging in and slicing the abominations to bits), and was certainly exicted by the announcement of the sequel, though I haven't been following the updates exactly because I didn't expect to buy it immediately. Best wishes to the dev team and other fans; I hope you all weather this pandemic in good shape.
 
  • 1
Reactions:

Bear Squared

First Lieutenant
Aug 13, 2020
221
383
Potential topic shift but related to the release date, production, and commitment to the launch - so on the Discord, one of the official moderators (might have been Hardsuit or a Paradox employer) said they were pushing to do new Developer Diaries once every TWO WEEKS.

My vote: If this is true, please god no - let the team work, and no more empty "here's what a producer does" updates when the developers could be making content and polishing it. Of course I'd like to see new content, but I don't want "filler updates" since I imagine even as minor as they seem to us, they can waste days typing up, approving, getting publisher approval, editing, and then posting... which is all wasted if there's nothing of substance, like the last one (it was fine, but it felt like filler and didn't reveal much of the game, which is why we're here).

Also for the moderators: I couldn't decide if this post should be here in the production dev diary topic, but that topic felt very specific to the production angle and I didn't think would have as long a lifespan as this topic, and this does affect the release date, so I gave it a shot. Apologies if it should be moved.
 
  • 1
Reactions:

somewherebeyond

Sergeant
3 Badges
Dec 12, 2019
56
101
  • Shadowrun Returns
  • Shadowrun: Dragonfall
  • Shadowrun: Hong Kong
That's a good point. I do know other DLCs for other products sometimes just have juniors work on them (to save costs) but not having the Lead Writer involved in the DLC (and hopefully multiple) seems important. Also, I'd think some of the writers if not Brian (who was hired full time at Hardsuit, so getting fired/leaving would be a short career there, and doesn't make much sense) would have already announced the other projects/companies they've moved on to.

Radio silence is often legally the best policy, especially if it's bad news and isn't delivered by the developers who were fired. Often, it feels like HR and PR departments want to see if the news fades away or vanishes completely so they don't even have to address it.

All that would be helpful here is knowing about the Lead Writer which feels like it could be confirmed while dodging the other points if they're uncomfortable (we don't need confirmation the Creative Director and PDX producer are gone, but if the circumstances were different and as to whether they are getting replaced, that would help).

If Discord is more responsive than the officials on this forum (I assumed the devs and PDX actually participated in these forums), I'll post the questions there if someone with the Knowing is present.
what i was trying to say. Any studio has a core team, which set direction for the studio. Creative director, technical director, lead designer, lead writer and couple lead developers (cinematics, ai, etc).

If such people leaving that's a huge blow to the studio. So if they left, that is bad to say simple.
 
  • 1
Reactions:

Feeona

First Lieutenant
Community Ambassador
72 Badges
Mar 27, 2019
219
514
  • Age of Wonders
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Cities: Skylines - Natural Disasters
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Cities: Skylines - Campus
  • Cities: Skylines - Mass Transit
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mandate of Heaven
  • Surviving Mars: First Colony Edition
  • BATTLETECH
  • Surviving Mars
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Cities: Skylines - Green Cities
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Crusader Kings III: Royal Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Surviving Mars: Digital Deluxe Edition
  • BATTLETECH - Digital Deluxe Edition
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife
  • Stellaris: Distant Stars
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • Surviving Mars: First Colony Edition
  • Stellaris: Megacorp
  • Stellaris: Nemesis
  • Stellaris: Necroids
  • Stellaris: Lithoids
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Stellaris: Ancient Relics
  • Europa Universalis IV
  • Stellaris: Federations
  • Prison Architect
  • BATTLETECH: Season pass
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Golden Century
  • Empire of Sin
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Europa Universalis 4: Emperor
  • King Arthur II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
Potential topic shift but related to the release date, production, and commitment to the launch - so on the Discord, one of the official moderators (might have been Hardsuit or a Paradox employer) said they were pushing to do new Developer Diaries once every TWO WEEKS.

FYI The "Prince of Discord" is myself.

I'd also just like to state that originally yes we were aiming for more frequent DD's and I can assure you they were light on the Developers time, however with recent changes and what we've seen from the community, we're going to take a little step back on the Dev Diaries. This gives the developers and us more time to see if we can put out something more substantial without impacting their time.

We can't promise anything but that's where we're at right now.
 
  • 1
Reactions: